Mnay people wonder after having wavefront LASIK how long before they can begin playing sports like football, basketball, swimming, scuba diving, rock climbing, walking, running, etc. They wonder if LASIK weakens the eye or if they need to be extra careful when playing. Let me answer this question about LASIK.
The San Francisco Bay Area has a wealth of sports that people play. With the ocean and the bay people enjoy kayaking, boating, fishing, swimming and even scuba diving or surfing. In San Jose people enjoy football, basketball, tennis, and other recreational activities (including martial arts such as kick boxing or jujitsu). In Contra Costa County (Walnut Creek and Concord), there is hiking, rock climbing, and golfing. One of the main reasons that San Francisco Bay Area residents undergo LASIK is to be able to enjoy a more active lifestyle. After LASIK most people will return to participate in the activities that they enjoyed before LASIK. Some people will even begin new hobbies after having LASIK because glasses or contacts prevented them from enjoying them.
The main concern after having LASIK or other eye surgery is to avoid any complications. One of the first concerns is infection. During LASIK, precautions are taken to be certain of a sterile environment and a strict antibiotic regimen is followed. This makes infection very unlikely. During the first 2 weeks following LASIK surgery, it is recommended that you avoid getting any liquids inside your eye that could cause an infection. This includes sweat, bath water, showers, jacuzzis, swimming pools, etc. All of these have a possibility of introducing bacteria into the eye as it is healing. While the majority of the eye heals within the first 24 hours following LASIK surgery, it is safer to avoid a situation that could cause problems.
Another concern for San Francisco Bay Area residents who have had LASIK surgery is the chance of dislodging the flap. While this is extremely rare, it could occur in cases where extreme force contacted the eye, particularly during the first few days following LASIK. The flap binds very tight within the first hour of LASIK surgery. This tight bind generally would prevent any incidents regarding the flap. As time passes the binding strengthens and eventually becomes as tight as prior to LASIK.
It might be possible to dislodge the LASIK flap early on in the healing. For this reason, it is suggested that San Francisco Bay Area residents avoid sports that could create this type of incident. Sports such as kick boxing, raquetball, football, etc. should be avoided during the early weeks following LASIK surgery. Following LASIK surgery recommended eyewear protection should be worn similar to other people who participate in these sports.